Yesterday afternoon, four armed men stormed into a hotel in Nairobi — Dusit Hotel — and proceeded to hurl a bomb at security, shoot at people and hold some others hostage. Six hours later, the situation was “resolved”. Now terror attacks in Kenya only begun in 1998, with the bombing of the U.S embassy, and even then, they have been few(less than 10) and far between and never ever coursed the death of more than 200 people excluding the violent post-election violence breakout of early 2008. Funny though, CNN once reported that Kenya was a ‘hot-bed of terrorism’ just a few days before a student in one of America’s schools decided to play Fortnite at school with a real gun, for like the a millionth time.
However, this post is not a rant on the very obvious racism and ignorant reporting of western media but on this demon of terrorism that we cannot seem to excommunicate no matter how many summits, special forces, operations and committees we have. It is the demon that has seven heads and every time you cut one off, seven others grow in its place. We started by battling tiny groups of militia in some countries whose agendas were all summarized by one word ‘Selfish ambition’; whether it was political or religious or economic or environmental it all came down to their way or the high way. This grew into larger groups that stormed cities and churches and places of entertainment and when these larger groups were found out(e.g the Al-Qaeda) they then reproduced into three,seven,fifteen and thirty something other groups with different names but the same M.O.
The other form of terrorism, other than organized groups of crazed militia, is one many people ignore — individuals. That kid who shot up a school and the guy who blew up a club and the woman who stabbed people in church and the husband that cut up his entire family. I’m not bringing this up to condemn someone’s child, since everyone is so sensitive these days, but to make us face the ugly truth, that these people are terrorists. They are hurting others in the name of their own depression, injustice, hurt pride, insanity and rationalized anger. When we don’t treat them as such, we end up not only repeating the cycle but growing its reach. And it doesn’t begin with the gun, the bomb, the knife or the machete but from the head. The signs are always the words, or posts, of someone. The seemingly insignificant acts of bad mouthing that turn into gossip that turn into cyber bullying and then they feel justified to act on it and start terrorizing kids at school or African-Americans in church or so on. It is the hateful comment on someone’s post based on their economic background or skin color or the language their speak or their accent or their geographical location or their religious beliefs.
“Terrorism is a manifestation of a deeper moral degradation in our society that is not tied to religion or politics or socio-economic background or even race/tribe.”
Terrorism is never just about ‘extremists’, it’s about us ‘normal’ folk; you know, those of us who would never take a gun just because someone hurt our feelings in school and those who can’t imagine killing people just because they don’t believe what you do and those of us who are ‘tolerant’. It’s us that are creating a cycle because we are not dealing with the root, just cutting off the poisonous flowers. Terrorism is a manifestation of a deeper moral degradation in our society that is not tied to religion or politics or socio-economic background or even race/tribe. This degradation is tied to our own selfish nature that we keep nurturing with our nice sounding words and wise-seeming philosophies. It is in that ‘my child cannot lose’ thinking and ‘I am always right’ or ‘You do you’ mentality or that ‘us guys are better’ culture that leaves us hollow, without a moral compass or roots and easily swayed by the winds of our emotions and extremist philosophies.
We need to go back to calling out the wrong not just saying ‘you do you’, to allowing our children to experience and know failure and defeat so that they can develop a healthy way of growing from and dealing with it instead of having a sense of entitlement. We need to remember that life is not about a ‘happy feeling’ and that deciding to be joyful will not give you joy but that it is OK to have down days and that these do not equal depression but that they are part of life and thus we need to learn to embrace them and grow not cower away and let them define us. We need to embrace community once more, realizing that me, myself and I will only bring forth loneliness, depression, entitlement, selfishness and ultimately deny us that chance to know people, viewing them as disposable.
Finally, we need to report on the triumphs, the good and the beautiful more than we report on the sad, tragic and painful. We need to be informed on all the goings on in life. News should never be just about all that is going wrong in the world but what is going right too. Giving people hope everyday is not the job for motivational speakers but for everyone. And when tragedy strikes, we need to report the facts of the matter and how the community around it is dealing with it; do not turn a tragedy into a showing of people’s dead bodies and what you believe is the worst that could happen but use it to show those who are left unbowed, what the people are doing to help and how the outside world can help out. This way terrorists never win — they do not get a voice — and people are reminded just how strong we are, how much we can endure and survive and how much we can thrive together despite the worst of it. Let’s protect our peace and our love for each other, let’s not let evil win.
I know that I normally do not post twice a week – although I have promised myself to try this year – but I really wanted to put this one out there in light of the recent attack on my beautiful city. Hoping this makes us all reflect and be better. Make sure you subscribe if you have not already and ensure you check your email for weekly newsletters filled with inspiration and little tips.
Hey there! I am Makenah, a passionate believer, writer, avid reader, poetess, wannabe globetrotter and amateur programmer. I enjoy dancing, listening to music, reading, cooking, travelling and eating.
I started this blog as a way to share my journey through life; the pitfalls, the strengths, the beauty and passion, the pain, the beautiful places I go and people I meet and most importantly the triumph of grace in life. I do this so that through my sharing my journey, you can learn to embrace yours and trust the process of becoming who God created you to be and stop obsessing over 'making it' and 'being someone' or 'getting there' but realizing that life is a journey to be taken and enjoyed and the things and accomplishments are not a final destination but a pit stop on your way to forever. So sign up and join me, you won't regret it! And feel free to interact with me either via social media or in the comment section
Love and light to you,